Monday, November 29, 2004

SFJ on Eminem:
Eminem’s mode is the childishly profane, the comically exaggerated—he’s more Benny Hill than Lenny Bruce. But on “Encore” he sounds like neither; he’s buried too deep inside his own problems to see the audience. It’s time for Eminem to look for subjects outside his head. And leave the family alone.

Carl Wilson on nearly everything else:
What Bugs digs most is his depiction as a modernist trickster, in the line of jesters and "wascals" going back to the African hare deity who quick-changed into America's Br'er Rabbit. A society invents tricksters to undermine its own rules, so it can move on, says Leland, bringing up Bob Dylan, Miles Davis and Richard Pryor.

And now there's hip-hop, with its roots in the rhyming-insult showdowns known as "signifying," after a trickster type called the Signifying Monkey. No wonder Eminem's 8 Mile character was named Rabbit, Bugs thinks. ("Note to self: Could I mebbe make a buck off that?")

Haven't yet read Wilson's column for the requisite second time.

As for Eminem looking to subjects outside his head. Agreed. Entirely. But what of the fact that after proving that point himself he sticks a gun inside that head and proceeds to splatter its contents all over the place? Seems to us (*WARNING: Wishful Thinking Ahead*) that maybe that means he agrees with Sasha and everyone else who has called this record for what it is (psst... "not good").

Just a theory. One we've already beaten you over the head with.

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